Reinhard Schneider (historian)

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Reinhard Schneider (born March 13, 1934 in Berlin ; † April 7, 2020 ) was a German historian . He dedicated himself to the legal and constitutional history of the early Middle Ages , the investigation of border regions and conflicts as well as language and translation problems in the Middle Ages.

life and work

Reinhard Schneider graduated from the Friedrich Engels School in Berlin in 1953. From 1953 to 1958 he studied history, Latin philology, Romance studies and philosophy at the Free University of Berlin . In 1960 the second state examination for the office of the student council took place, in 1963 he received his doctorate at the Free University of Berlin with a thesis supervised by Walter Schlesinger and Wolfgang H. Fritze . From 1964 to 1967 he was academic advisor at the Friedrich Meinecke Institute . From 1967 to 1971 he was an academic senior councilor. His habilitation took place in 1971 at the Free University of Berlin. From 1971 to 1975 he taught there as a professor. From 1975 to 1980 he was a professor at the University of Marburg . There he held the Dean's Office of the Department of History in 1978/79 . From 1980 until his retirement in 2001, he taught in the successor of Harald Zimmermann as professor for medieval history at the Saarland University . He was the spokesman for the Saar Regional Association of the German University Association , between 1987 and 1989 Dean of the Philosophical Faculty and initiated the establishment of the university archive.

His academic focus was on political history, legal and constitutional history of the Middle Ages, history of kingship, elections and elections, history of the Frankish Empire , history of the Cistercians , the age of Charles IV , borders and border regions. With his dissertation published in 1964, he presented a conceptual study of the Carolingian treaties from 840 to 881. In it he reinterpreted the terms caritas and fraternitas . In his habilitation he dealt with the king's elevations among the Lombards and Franks from the 6th to the 8th century. In 1982 he published an overview of the Franconian Empire in the series Oldenbourg Grundriss der Geschichte . This was the first time he ever presented a monographic representation of the Franconian Empire, the fourth edition of which appeared in 2001. As “characteristic elements” of Franconian rule, he recognized “political cleverness paired with considerations [...] in addition to religious and orthodox basic attitudes.” In his study published in 1994, he dealt with the Cistercian contribution to the development of the monastery budget to the city and state budget. His last monograph on interpreting in the Middle Ages. Linguistic mediation in secular and ecclesiastical contexts appeared in October 2012. Until then, the problem had only been dealt with in essays and encyclopedic articles.

He was a member of the Historical Commission for Hesse (since 1975), the Constance Working Group for Medieval History (since 1976), a corresponding member of the Berlin Scientific Society (since 1977) and a member of the Association for Constitutional History (since 1984). From 1983 he was a member and from 1984 to 1999 chairman of the commission for Saarland regional history and folk research . In 1983/84 Schneider initiated two conferences of the Constance working group on the Reichenau on late medieval monarchy. In the introduction to the conference proceedings edited by Schneider, the assumption is made that “the European scene around 1400 was particularly crisis-ridden” and “around the middle of the 15th century there were reforms and attempts at reform across Europe”. In 1986, together with Harald Zimmermann, he held a conference on elections and voting in the Middle Ages for the rich .

Schneider died in April 2020 at the age of 86. He was buried in Berlin.



  • About interpreting in the Middle Ages. Linguistic mediation in secular and ecclesiastical contexts (= Archive for Cultural History. Vol. 72). Böhlau, Vienna et al. 2012, ISBN 978-3-412-20967-4 .
  • From the monastery budget to the city and state budget. The Cistercian contribution (= monographs on the history of the Middle Ages. Volume 38). Hiersemann, Stuttgart 1994, ISBN 3-7772-9406-3 .
  • The Franconian Empire (= Oldenbourg outline of history. Volume 5). Oldenbourg, Munich et al. 1982, ISBN 3-486-48801-5 (4th, revised and expanded edition. Ibid 2001, ISBN 3-486-49694-8 ).
  • King's election and exaltation in the early Middle Ages. Investigations into the succession of the Lombards and Merovingians (= monographs on the history of the Middle Ages. Vol. 3). Hiersemann, Stuttgart 1972, ISBN 3-7772-7203-5 (also: Berlin, Free University, habilitation paper, 1971).
  • Brotherhood and friendship by oath. The process of dissolution of the Carolingian Empire as reflected in the caritas terminology in the treaties of the Carolingian kings of the 9th century (= historical studies. Vol. 388, ZDB -ID 514152-7 ). Matthiesen, Lübeck et al. 1964 (at the same time: Berlin, Free University, dissertation, 1956/1957).



  • Catalogus professorum Academiae Marburgensis. = The academic teachers at the Philipps University in Marburg. Volume 3: From 1971 to 1991. Part 1: Inge Auerbach: Department 01-19 (= publications of the Historical Commission for Hesse. Vol. 15, 3). Elwert, Marburg 2000, ISBN 3-7708-1159-3 , p. 170 f.
  • Wolfgang Haubrichs , Kurt-Ulrich Jäschke, Michael Oberweis (eds.): Recognize boundaries - overcome boundaries. Festschrift for Reinhard Schneider on the completion of his 65th year of life. Thorbecke, Sigmaringen 1999, ISBN 3-7995-7079-9 .
  • Reinhard Schneider. In: Jörg Schwarz (arr.): The Constance Working Group for Medieval History 1951–2001. The members and their work. A bio-bibliographical documentation (= publications of the Constance Working Group for Medieval History on the occasion of its fiftieth anniversary 1951–2001. Vol. 2). Edited by Jürgen Petersohn . Thorbecke, Stuttgart 2001, ISBN 3-7995-6906-5 , pp. 371-376 ( online ).

Web links


  1. ^ Obituary in Saarbrücker Zeitung , April 18, 2020.
  2. See the review by Peter Classen in: Historische Zeitschrift 202, 1966, pp. 631–633. Also: Hans-Werner Goetz : Modern Medieval Studies. Status and perspectives of medieval research. Darmstadt 1999, p. 271.
  3. See the review by Dietrich Claude in: Zeitschrift der Savigny-Stiftung für Rechtsgeschichte, Germanistische Department 91, 1974, pp. 203–205; Carlrichard Brühl in: German Archive for Research into the Middle Ages 23, 1973, pp. 626–628 ( online ).
  4. See the reviews of Johannes Fried in: Historische Zeitschrift 236, 1983, pp. 655–656; Wilfried Hartmann in: German Archive for Research into the Middle Ages 40, 1984, pp. 307–308 ( online ).
  5. Reinhard Schneider: Das Frankenreich 4th, revised and expanded edition. Munich 2001, p. 2.
  6. See the reviews of Dietrich Lohrmann in: Francia 26, 1999, p. 336 ( online ); Theo Kölzer in: Vierteljahrschrift für Sozial- und Wirtschaftsgeschichte 82, 1995, pp. 569–571.
  7. See the review by Achim Thomas Hack in: H-Soz-Kult , December 5, 2012, ( online ); Claudia Garnier in: sehepunkte 16 (2016), No. 12 [15. December 2016], ( online ).
  8. See the review by Ellen Widder in: Blätter für deutsche Landesgeschichte 127 (1991), pp. 629–635 ( online ).
  9. Reinhard Schneider: Introduction. In the S. (Ed.): The late medieval royalty in European comparison. Sigmaringen 1987, pp. 9-14, here: p. 13 ( online ).